Tamás Szigeti – National Public Health Center (NPHC), Hungary

Lead data from Europe – results and policy implications – 27 April – 2:25 pm CEST

Lead (Pb) has been appointed as one of the priority substances in the second round of prioritization process in the HBM4EU project. The human biomonitoring data collected in the framework of the project showed the decreasing exposure of the European population over the past decades; however, this trend has not been observed to continue since 2010 which indicates permanent existence of Pb exposure. However, data on the most recent exposure is lacking. Although, the blood lead concentrations were below the reference values set by different organizations, the most recent studies reported health outcomes at lower concentrations, and it was suggested that there is likely no safe threshold for Pb neurotoxicity. Further investigations including the overview of effect biomarkers for Pb exposure, calculation of the burden of disease and further analysis of existing data (e.g. determinants of exposure, spatial differences) were performed in the HBM4EU project.


Tamás Szigeti (PhD) is a chemist with expertise in the field of environment and health. He is leading the Air Hygiene Laboratory focusing on air quality, aerobiology and human biomonitoring at the National Public Health Center, Hungary. He is the national hub contact point and the chemical group leader on lead in the HBM4EU project. He has been the scientific coordinator of some national and international projects on air pollution and aerobiology. He has been invited several times as temporary advisor by the World Health Organization. He is author and co-author in 21 peer reviewed papers.



The HBM4EU project was launched in 2016 with the aim of improving the collective understanding of human exposure to hazardous chemicals and developing HBM as an exposure assessment method. The project had €74m in funding and jointly implemented by 120 partners from 28 participating countries – 24 EU member states plus Norway, Switzerland, Iceland and Israel and the European Environment Agency. One of its aims was to ensure the sustainability of HBM in the EU beyond 2021. The project ended in June 2022. The website will not be updated any longer, except the page on peer reviewed publications, but will be online until 2032.